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Clear Help for 1st Level Accounting Students

by Archives January 29, 2003

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT
William Mcdiarmid mcd@vmaps.net
238 Gerrard Street East #301, Toronto, Ontario Canada M5A 2E8
Phone 416 962 7540 http://www.vmaps.net

Announcement: Students Can Now Solve Accounting Problems Quickly With Logic Maps
Making Sense of “a sea of words in a swamp of misery.”

Toronto, Ontario, Canada, January 31, 2003 – Who would have thought that a truly innovative advance in learning strategies would appear from the world of Accounting? A new learning tool, Visual Learning Maps for 1st level Accounting, at www.vmaps.net, provides clear help for students to solve problems quickly as well as a professor’s path that demonstrates complete course materials. Visual Learning Maps is a unique learning system that balances the logic of reasoning with the powerful rationales of perception, thus merging cognitive and visual learning.

The author, Bill Mcdiarmid CGA, says “Visual Learning Maps are literally road maps to solutions for each type of 1st level Accounting problem. The premise of the learning system is that early student success in solving problems creates an ‘I can do it’ attitude. Learners keep moving forward with confidence and comprehension.” The learning system has been extensively tested over a three-year period. The results delivered a higher pass rate and significant reductions in dropout and failure rates.

Mcdiarmid started the project while teaching Accounting. Mcdiarmid empathized with the students’ frustration as they struggled with problems, and began looking for ways to help. He began creating “maps” which he honed with classes until each one provided a clear and quick route to the solution. Mcdiarmid was encouraged in his efforts by an important research study conducted at the S J Silberman College of Business Administration, Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey, titled “Barriers to Learning Experienced by Asian Students in American Accounting Classrooms,” and presented at the American Accounting Association Mid Atlantic Regional Meeting in 1998. Participants in the study repeatedly described Accounting as a “sea of words” and “a swamp of misery.” Mcdiarmid knew that it was not only Asian students who were experiencing this torment. This study convinced McDiarmid to develop Visual Learning Maps for 1st level Accounting.

Student’s Path and Professor’s Path
The Visual Learning Maps website www.vmaps.net is designed to meet the needs of both Accounting students and professors. The website’s “Student’s Path” is a one click trip to free Maps for the majority of the course Maps. Learners have the opportunity to test drive the Maps and solve problems step-by-step with the exact road map to the solution. They can then assess the value of the Maps for themselves. All the Maps are grouped by the types of problems standard to Accounting worldwide. The site even provides memory triggers for students “to keep the columns straight,” an obstacle repeatedly encountered by learners. The website’s “Professor’s Path” provides numerous examples of the Maps and Workbook pages as well as testimonials, the Fairleigh Dickinson Research Study, and the specific advantages of the learning system over traditional course materials; for example, the Workbook has five distinct advantages over traditional materials.

Schools are invited to link to the site from the coding provided on the site “link to us.”

A Few Comments, by Others – From the Website
The Visual Learning Maps learning system is a significant advancement in how innovation can markedly improve the learning process. I have no hesitation in recommending this course material to educational institutions.
Mary McLuhan, Chancellor – The McLuhan Center for Global Communication

“There are two things that got me through Accounting: my calculator and the MAPS book. Without either of these I’d be back next term.”
K. Reuber, Accounting & Finance Student – Seneca College, Toronto

“The pages look great and make more sense than the text book.”
M. Young – Student, University of Phoenix

For information: www.vmaps.net email contact: mcd@vmaps.net
Phone: 416 962 7540
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